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Egyptian Youth in Revolt

The Middle East and North Africa are currently in the midst of a surge in youth population: a baby boom started in the late '70s through the 1980s means that a huge proportion of these countries' populations are under the age of 30. As we saw in Iran in 2005, in Egypt in 2008 (the April 6 general strike) and across the North African nations this past month, youth are a destabilizing influence on the sclerotic and brittle institutions of authoritarian political and economic rule. Almost two-thirds of the Egyptian population are under the age of 30.

Most student governments with large enough budgets pay their members - usually executive positions, but sometimes members of the student legislature are compensated too. Their stated purpose is foremost explained as a way to make sure working class students aren't shut out of student government roles. Stipend use is an easy fix, and as with most easy fixes, it's also a shoddy one.